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Subject Religion

DOI: 10.1111/b.9780631181392.1995.x


[ x ] In A strology , an interpretation of an individual's (or group's, e.g. nation's) fate and character based on the positions of the heavenly bodies at a particular moment, usually birth. The horoscope has as its basic frame of reference (1) the zodiac, which is the circle of twelve ‘signs’ (Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, Pisces) traversed by the sun, moon and planets in periods of, approximately, 27 days (moon), one year (sun, Mercury, Venus), two years (Mars), 12 years (Jupiter), 30 years (Saturn), etc., and (2) a relatively fixed circle of 12 numbered ‘houses’, against which, as a result of the earth's daily rotation, the entire zodiac with the sun, moon, and planets appears to turn once every 24 hours. Casting a horoscope is thus like reading a number of pointers on a clock which itself turns quite rapidly against a second dial. A difference of an hour, even of a few minutes, can effect a considerable change; moreover, each horoscope is specific to a particular locality. Significant data are: (1) the positions of sun, moon and planets within the zodiac (e.g. sun in Aries); (2) the ‘aspects’, i.e. the angular distances, of the sun, moon and planets to each other (e.g. Venus in ‘square’ or ‘quartile’ aspect, i.e. at an angle of 90°, to Mars); (3) the positions of the sun, moon, planets and signs against the circle ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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